21 Feb 2019

Karl Lagerfeld & His Legacy

Let’s Talk the prolific Karl Lagerfeld

The passing of Karl Lagerfeld this week was a sad day not only for the fashion industry but also for creators of all kinds. Lagerfeld breathed new life into the iconic design house that is Chanel, securing its place in the closets of all kinds of women; young, old, classic and quirky.

His ongoing masterpieces and breathtaking garments ensured the house never lost touch and remained the most sophisticated, timeless brand ever to be seen.

Saying goodbye to Lagerfeld is saying goodbye to the fashion show as an immersive experience. He constantly paved the way and made every show even more memorable than the last. Even those of us not attending the shows were enthralled by the world of Chanel.

Sometimes a controversial character, he knew who and what he stood for; he was an intriguing and unique man, right until the very end. He was so often extreme, provocative and curious. Lagerfeld made sure Chanel never lost its charm.

What is your first memory of Chanel?

Nearly all of us will have a memory of Chanel albeit our first or recent bottle of No 5, slipping into ballet flats or the 2.5 quilted handbags. Even those of us who do not own a Chanel piece will still understand the charm of the double C’s and the power of the Little Black Dress.

Coco Chanel herself, an impeccable tastemaker, championed elegance and individuality, traits Lagerfeld continued to honour during his reign.

What Warhol was to art, he was to fashion; he is irreplaceable. He is the only person who could make black and white colourful” Claudia Schiffer perfectly sums up his simple genius and the legacy he has left behind.

His unapologetic style and ability to move and embrace the times will forever send ripples throughout the world of fashion. There can only ever be one Karl Lagerfeld.  In the words of Coco Chanel, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different”, which exactly is what Lagerfeld was.

Because of Karl

chanel liquid matte in 956 invincible  ||  vaneli embellished flat  ||  vaneli slingback pump

veronica beard tweed jacket  ||  rebecca taylor houndstooth tweed jacket  ||  rickie freeman tweed cocktail dress

images, getty images, ballo della rosa 2018

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I AM STILL DEVASTATED by his passing.He has always been THERE in tHE FASHION WORLD!
I was probably about 50 when I received a pair of his flats as a gift.MY first CHANEL item and Only item.
I think I have worn them three times only!More like a piece of ART to HOLD ON TOO than wear for me!


To La Contessa,

my darling….the people at the House of Chanel will cry. And cry.
Then, they will pick up their needles and thread, they will bring out the best and the most beautiful English tweeds, they will draw near and inwards, they will pull rank together around the next designer, who as it appears, was a close as a daughter to Karl; they will talk, they will laugh, they will dream and they will weep once again and again as the stunning silks and brocades, a sketch, a jewel, will bring back their immediate memories of such a man that he was. They will lean into one another and upon one another. They will take a deep breath, and then – dive into the new collection which I feel will be one of the most significant and poignant collections the house will see. And we shall weep and smile also when we see it. If you have the opportunity La Contessa, send them a message with your encouragment and your love. They need that right now. And tell them, Vive La France! and thank them for their dedication and skill and how that has touched you in what you have owned.


Vicki, What a beautiful testament to the power of Chanel and everyone who loved and admired Karl Lagerfeld and his creativity. I hadn’t thought about sending those who are left behind a message, but I will. I have several Chanel dresses in my closet and remember fondly when and where I tried on my first Chanel… and I took a deep breath and bought it. Love the Chanel inspired creations at Neiman’s you’ve listed. xoxo, Brenda

Carole J

Hi Vicki, I too felt sad when learning the news of his passing. An artist, a true visionary , I admired him so. Yes, I remember as a girl buying No.5, then about 25 years ago I bought Chanel when the brand was still quiet. No one was buying it on a trip to Tx except mature women. I knew that it was being revived slowly back then and seized the opportunity. I think I feel the same as you do that this is a close of one segment in the story of , The House of Chanel, I do believe that the brand will have continued success as their are so many talented people who can sew, bead, and understand fabrics, design and all the multiple facets of cteating beautiful products. May Karl Lagerfeld rest in peace.


Devastated to hear the news, even after a few days I still feel incredibly sad when I see or hear tributes to this amazing creative. I don’t own a piece of Chanel, but while studying fashion design for three years he was such an inspiration to me, not just for Chanel but in his own right.

Michelle à Dètroit

My first childhood memory of Chanel was the bottle of No. 5 that was always on my Grandmother’s dressing table. It smelled completely different back then; softer, lighter and much more subtle. I loved the whole Chanel look in the 80’s and early 90’s; tons of faux pearls and jeweled sautoirs, chain belts, little black skirts, cream silk shirts. I have kept a black pleated skirt, a gray pin stripe light wool coat, a pink and purple suit, a small navy CC bag with a rounded leather shoulder strap (I’ve never liked those chain handles) I adore the current block heeled cap toe slingbacks. I’ve given away or sold everything else. I’m not so into the Chanellook these days. What a marvelous, full life Lagerfeld led. He never lost Madame’s core message.


Whilst he mainly hid behind those designer frames, to see his face without them is to see strength and a romanticist…..what a face, what a brain, what a heart. What a man. Hurts deeply to know that this father figure to the many designers around the world has suddenly stopped in his creative tracks. I just think of Marc Jacobs, John Galliano and even his contemporary Valentino and find myself gasping my breath with tears at what he must have meant to them and so many others. May he be walking the streets of gold in a new dimension now. He probably didn’t know how deeply he was loved. We never do. It is said that when a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it produces much…. I hope I get to meet you one day Karl, somehow, my fearless and creative and very special gentleman.


Honestly, I never followed his trademark style, but I usually never really hold on to any ONE brand or style. However, what he and many other legends have left with me is the importance of individuality when it comes to fashion. And for that, I can say he has left a great impression on many.

Joyce Reynolds

Until I read this, I did not know KL passed. Have been so wrapped up in the grief of my 24 YO son dying on his motorcycle when he was hit by a drunk driver. The day of my son’s funeral, was walked into my closet not knowing what to wear. Mission was just to get something black. Sounds silly, but my hand went to the first black item I saw which was simple black Chanel jacket from the ‘90’s. It was like my son said “Mom, I want you to look and feel nice today for me”. I previously thought I would retire my little black jacket, that absorbed so many hugs and tears. Now I think I will get it out and wear it this spring and rock it with some jeans. BTY- how did Karl manage to wear all that black with his beautiful white cat?

Michelle à Dètroit

I hope that a major retrospective will be in the works soon. Lagerfeld was a highly disciplined genius. I would love to see work from all aspects of his career exhibited together.


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